This Week in Sooner Tennis: The Oklahoma men’s tennis team looks to pick up wins over three schools from the other side of the Red River this week. OU continues Big 12 action against No. 10 Texas Tech on Wednesday, March 30. The Sooners will take on the Red Raiders at the Mcleod Tennis Center in Lubbock, Texas at 1:30 p.m. The Sooners return home to face 15th-ranked Texas A&M on Saturday, April 2 and No. 27 Texas on Sunday, April 3. Both matches begin at 12 p.m. and will be played at the OU Headington Family Tennis Center.
The Sooners enter the match against Texas Tech with a record of 13-1, while the Red Raiders have a season mark of 18-1. Tech and Oklahoma each own an 0-1 record in Big 12 play. Texas A&M is currently ranked 15th and owns a 7-4 record, OU will be the Aggies first Big 12 match-up of the season. Texas is 6-3 on the season and has not competed in Big 12 play.
Last Time Against Texas Tech: Oklahoma last faced Texas Tech in the spring of 2004, the Sooners rallied to defeat the Red Raiders, 4-3. OU currently owns a 13-11 all-time series record against Texas Tech.
Last Time Against Texas A&M: The two programs last met in the fall. The Sooners picked up three singles wins. Including the No. 1 and No. 2 positions. Alexei Ivanov defeated Jerry Makowski, 3-6, 6-4, 7-6 (5), at the No. 1 and Ondrej Fukala dominated Yevgeny Supeko, 6-4, 6-4, at the No. 2 spot. In the spring of 2004, the Sooners lost to the Aggies, 6-1.
Last Time Against Texas: In 2004, the rivalry took place in Austin, where the Sooners lost 6-0 to the Longhorns. OU has not beat UT in 40 years, the Sooners last beat the Longhorns, 4-3, in 1965.
Sooners Record: The Sooners have already had a record setting season with a 11-0 start. Prior to this spring, OU’s best start was last year’s 2004 squad that rallied off nine straight victories before its first loss.
Oklahoma Successful Against Regional Competition: Oklahoma has not lost a regional match-up this season, leaving them at 5-0 when facing Region V opponents. OU has won 27 of 30 regional singles matches and 11 of 15 doubles matches.
Sooners in National Rankings: Oklahoma is ranked 59th in the ITA computer team ranking. In the individual rankings, junior Alexei Ivanov is ranked 69th nationally, while the duo of senior Silviu Tanasoiu and sophomore Marek Velicka debut as the 58th-ranked doubles team in the nation. The pair enter the rankings after defeating Baylor’s No. 22 duo of Michal Kokta and Lars Poershke.
Sooners Success: Two Sooners have only one loss this season. Senior Ondrej Fukala owns an 11-1 record, while senior Silviu Tanasoiu is 10-1. Five Sooners also own a spring record with 10 or more wins. Oklahoma has earned 82 points this season, while only giving up a total of 14 points to their opponents.
Head Coach Paul Lockwood: Paul Lockwood begins his 18th season as Oklahoma head men’s tennis coach. The OU graduate has compiled an overall record of 251-160 and claimed the Big Eight Conference title in 1992. Lockwood was named Big Eight Coach of the Year in 1991 and 1992. Lockwood’s teams have also earned eight Academic ITA All-America team honors (1996, 1997, 1998, 1999, 2000, 2001, 2003, 2004).